Questions About Fan Culture Reading

The first reading seemed to be about gender roles and how they seem to matter when it comes to television. In my personal opinion, I have to say that when I first watch a show I go in giving it a fair chance to see whether or not I like the show. Such examples from my life are Smallville, Lost, Supernatural, The Walking Dead, and Chuck. These are only some of the many shows that I would be willing to watch over and over again. None of these did I go in thinking I was going to follow for as long as they continued to make new episodes; however I came to love each and every one of them because of how I believe that they are great shows.  It is mainly due to relatable characters, or because the plot line has become something that I want to see how it turns out.

There was a pdf about Star Trek, which I did not really understand, mostly due to the fact that I know absolutely nothing about the show or the characters. Yet from what I was able to understand was how fans made fan fiction. Which seemed to be just fine, especially because if there is a large following of a show, there will be those who want it to continue even though the actors have left the show, or that the show was suddenly discontinued.

In terms of the Twilight article, I understood how there are fans, but there are also those who are against the mere idea of Twilight. Both sides have the right to speak their mind about Twilight, but at the same time, I do not understand why there was the Anti-Twilight Movement, because as someone else had asked, “why put energy into something you hate” and they responded with a basic, it doesn’t take a lot of energy, yet why bother to slam something that does not affect who you are or what you can do.

The links to the readings are in order as I talked about them.

Keidra Chaney, “Fandom and Identity / Fandom as Identity,” The Learned Fangirl (16 Aug 2013)

Jacqueline M. Pinkowitz, “‘The Rabid Fans that Take [Twilight] Much Too Seriously’: The Construction and Rejection of Excess inTwilight Antifandom,” Praxis 7 (2011)

My thoughts on this week’s readings about dystopian futures is that as human’s we must take care in the things that we do, say, and create. Based on in-class discussion, there are many possible things that could occur that could cause humanity to change drastically. Such an example was that of a self driving car, and if there were another human, or a group of humans, in the road, what would the car do. Would the car proceed through the human to protect the one inside the vehicle, or drive into a wall sacrificing the person inside the vehicle to save the human(s) in the road? This is a question of morality, and seemed to stir the class a little in terms of if they would want to get inside a vehicle that is autonomous. Given what we have read, viewed, and discussed, I do indeed feel different about my engagement in digital spaces. I already knew the saying, “watch what you say, where you say it, and who you say it to,” yet this has added a step further in terms of attempting to understand whether we should continue to develop certain technologies, especially those which are A.I’s.

Dystopian Visions

Perhaps one of the most disturbing dystopian vision I see for humanity is the inability to feel as though we are safe. For instance, right now as I type this I am in my room, and I feel secure. If through my computer’s video camera I was being watched, it would be unnerving due to the fact that it would mean that someone was always watching, that no matter where I went, there would be nowhere I felt safe to gather my thoughts, to write down ideas, without thinking that someone else could potentially steal them. Other situations include the DRM (digital rights management) where if one were to buy or rent something online, only that person has access to what has been bought. As an example, lets say that the person has bought a movie, and that movie is only view-able should the person, be connected to the internet, and use the same device that the movie has been purchased on. This does not allow for viewers to sell the movie if they did not like it, in order to have funds to buy another movie, or to simply give it to a friend so that they may watch it. This applies to anything that is digitally bought, movies, games, books; all of these things would suddenly not be allowed to be shared, and to some degree, they are not. Movies for instance are only allowed to be viewed on a person’s device that has an account to someone who has purchased said movie. Books are the same way. Video games are another story, and in this case, there was even a huge debate about Microsoft’s current generation game console, the Xbox One. To make a long story short, the console was going to be required to always be connected to the internet to play games, otherwise it was going to be an expensive paperweight.